Archive for January, 2004

Saturday, January 31st, 2004

Four years ago, I was laboring over my undergraduate application right here in my house…at the same computer. My parents spent too much money just so that I could up with perfect personal statement. I submitted my application, feeling so full of it. I felt so arrognant, thinking that I could get into any school I applied to. At the time, I thought…how could any school overlook my outstanding gpa and extraordinary set of activities? And certainly, several months later, I received my acceptance letters from UC Davis and UCSD, I was that much assured…until I received the acceptance letter from Berkeley saying that they didn\’t have enough room for me in the Fall and would have to defer me to the Spring. I didn\’t know what that meant. A week later, I received a rejection letter from UCLA. And that was the moment, I realized that I wasn\’t the top student I thought I was.

So four years later, despite my acceptance to Indiana-Purdue, I am still wondering why IUPUI would decide to accept me. It couldn\’t be because of my medicore gpa or GRE scores. It\’s all like I feel that I barely made it. That mostly, I was wearing a mask of the deserving candidate and I am afraid they\’ll find that it\’s only me behind it. Tomorrow, the applications for Georgia Tech, Iowa State and University of Michigan – Ann Arbor are due. Alas, those feelings of inferiority!

Friday, January 30th, 2004

I got accepted to IUPUI (aka Indiana-Purdue Informatics) graduate program! :D :D :D

When I say \”two ten\”, I mean 2:10. My mom calls me and asks what time I want to meet her. I say two. Then she says that she will meet me at ten. I repeat my interpretation back to my mom. Two ten? I ask. She says At ten. Suddenly at 1:50 pm, the buzzer rings and she is at my door. I hear her irritated voice. I quickly gather my stuff and leave my apartment. Not a surprise, she first criticizes me saying that it was AT TEN. And I finally figure it out, in Chinese, people think of time of either ten until and not ten after.

Thursday, January 29th, 2004

MY INTERNET CONNECTION IS DOWN. DOWN SINCE YESTERDAY.

For those smart alecks out there, I am of course using campus Internet currently FYI.

Edit: Friday. Now it\’s back. But apparently with my internet connection down, some people have disappeared off the face of the planet. *cough*

Wednesday, January 28th, 2004

Maybe it was early morning? Maybe it was his first time to a college career fair? Or perhaps my (weak) handshake? When I approached the Palm (the maker of the palm pilot) table, he took my resume and basically told me to go away, not even letting me ask the i-want-to-show-that-i-am-interested-but-i-don\’t-really-care-about-your-company questions.

The only thing(s) I came away from the career fair was 8 different pens/pencils, a Swiss Army knife (that I am afraid to use because I\’ll stab myself inadverdently) and floss.

Tuesday, January 27th, 2004

I had been clicking a newly acquired pen for about 5 minutes. Repeatedly…probably driving the people sitting next to me crazy. I was prepared to have all my documents ripped apart. Pen marks strewn all over the place. I was building up the shield so that my \”low\” self-esteem wouldn\’t cause me to walk out with tears in my eyes (as I have done in the past). The career counselor finally called my name. I sat down and showed her my resume and statement of purpose, ready for \”constructive\” criticism. And to my disappointment, she said nothing beyond \”THIS IS GREAT! IT\’S PERFECT! I DO NOT KNOW WHAT ELSE TO SAY!\”

All my fidgeting and anxiety for nothing! I was grateful that my resume and statement were so great, but I was sorely dissatisfied. Perhaps, I am supposed to accept the fact that her nametag read \”Counseling Intern\” rather than \”Counselor\”. When I was a peer tutor in high school, I would scribble all over students\’ papers even if they were really good. I always found something that could be improved. But for my resume and statement…they were both…\”perfect\”.

If they are so perfect, why have I not gotten a full-time job or a grad school acceptance? Maybe it\’s my interviewing skills and my better-than-average-but-not-spectacular-enough academic record.

I went to Express to find a business suit and realized that I was still not ready to spend $200.

Monday, January 26th, 2004

Sigh, it has been one week! :(

I have always disliked the Berkeley post office. Out of the usual anxiety, I rushed to the post office to mail off my applications. When I arrived, they were serving number 12 and I had number 33. I waited impatiently for about 45 minutes while one worker took his time to put boxes into a cart. Sure, he is entitled to not break his back…but look at that line of 30 people! Did I mention that by the time they were serving me, people were getting numbers in the sixties? I couldn’t understand a single word of the ebonics-speaking postal worker. “Ya wanna only two stamped and additional?” he asked. I sputtered some non-understandable confusion, probably increasing the post office disgruntleness.

The visited ___ is a nice tool for bragging rights, but nothing more. All the countries I have ever visited!!! All it really shows is how I tend to stay in 5-star hotels.

What really shows my supposed traveling is the states I visited. Of course notice how I have neglected the majority of the South (except for Florida but we all know that this state doesn\’t really count)

Sunday, January 25th, 2004

\”Just walk away,\” my dad said. \”Just walk away.\”

My mom had shamelessly seeked out the shortest line in the rows of cashier. It was one that had just opened up…that was obviously to be fed by a line about 10 carts long. Seeing my mom push her way to the front of the line reminded me of my childhood embarassment. When I was younger, I often would walk to the other side of the store when my mom started debating with salespeople. Or even worse, how my mom raised a huge fuss when a car accidentally swiped against her (barely a noticeable dent) in my middle school parking lot.

At Costco, I refused to move my cart, knowing that my fellow shoppers did not appreciate someone jumping ahead of them or…squeezing past them just so that we could get out the store faster. My dad told me later how he thought my mom\’s squabbling would raise the anti-asian sentiment. In the end, to avoid a potentially embarassing situation, I walked away — pretending that I still had dignity. Perhaps that itself is still very shameful.

Sunday, January 25th, 2004

Out of boredom and cataloging my tastes…a movie meme. This is the top 100 movies from imdb. The meme asks to bold all the movies I have seen. But how about the movies where I spent 20 minutes watching then get distracted or lose interest. Maybe I will italicize these! I am disappointed that I haven\’t watched the majority of the movies, especially the older ones.

1. Godfather, The (1972)
2. Shawshank Redemption, The (1994)
3. Godfather: Part II, The (1974)
4. Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring, The (2001)
5. Schindler\’s List (1993)
6. Citizen Kane (1941)
7. Casablanca (1942)
8. Seven Samurai (1954)
9. Star Wars (1977) – I fell asleep watching this one
10. Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb (1964)
11. Memento (2000)
12. One Flew Over the Cuckoo\’s Nest (1975)
13. Rear Window (1954)
14. Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers, The (2002)
15. Star Wars: Episode V – The Empire Strikes Back (1980)
16. Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981)
17. Usual Suspects, The (1995)
18. Amelie (2001)
19. Pulp Fiction (1994)
20. North by Northwest (1959) – Tanner and I almost watched this one!
21. Psycho (1960)
22. Silence of the Lambs, The (1991)
23. 12 Angry Men (1957)
24. Lawrence of Arabia (1962)
25. It\’s a Wonderful Life (1946)
26. The Good, the Bad and the Ugly (1966)
27. Goodfellas (1990)
28. American Beauty (1999)
29. Vertigo (1958)
30. Pianist, The (2002)
31. Sunset Blvd. (1950)
32. Apocalypse Now (1979)
33. Some Like It Hot (1959)
34. Matrix, The (1999)
35. To Kill a Mockingbird (1962)
36. Taxi Driver (1976)
37. Third Man, The (1949)
38. Paths of Glory (1957)
39. Fight Club (1999)
40. Boot, Das (1981)
41. L.A. Confidential (1997)
42. Double Indemnity (1944)
43. Chinatown (1974)
44. Requiem for a Dream (2000)
45. Maltese Falcon, The (1941)
46. Singin\’ in the Rain (1952)
47. Bridge on the River Kwai, The (1957)
48. Sen to Chihiro no kamikakushi (2001) AKA – Spirited Away
49. Saving Private Ryan (1998)
50. All About Eve (1950)
51. M (1931)
52. Monty Python and the Holy Grail (1975)
53. Raging Bull (1980)
54. Once Upon a Time in the West (1968)
55. Se7en (1995)
56. Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon (2000)
57. Wizard of Oz, The (1939)
58. 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968)
59. Vita e bella, La (1997) AKA: Life is Beautiful
60. American History X (1998)
61. Sting, The (1973)
62. Touch of Evil (1958)
63. Manchurian Candidate, The (1962)
64. Alien (1979)
65. Mr. Smith Goes to Washington (1939)
66. Rashomon (1950)
67. Leon (1994) (Known as \’The Professional\’ in the US)
68. Annie Hall (1977)
69. Great Escape, The (1963)
70. Clockwork Orange, A (1971)
71. Treasure of the Sierra Madre, The (1948)
72. Reservoir Dogs (1992)
73. Sixth Sense, The (1999)
74. Jaws (1975)
75. Amadeus (1984)
76. On the Waterfront (1954)
77. Ran (1985)
78. Braveheart (1995)
79. High Noon (1952)
80. Fargo (1996)
81. Blade Runner (1982)
82. Apartment, The (1960)
83. Aliens (1986)
84. Toy Story 2 (1999)
85. Strangers on a Train (1951)
86. Modern Times (1936)
87. Shining, The (1980)
88. Donnie Darko (2001)
89. Duck Soup (1933)
90. Princess Bride, The (1987)
91. Lola Rennt (Run Lola, Run) (1998) – MY FAVORITE MOVIE EVER
92. City Lights (1931)
93. General, The (1927)
94. Metropolis (1927)
95. Searchers, The (1956)
96. Full Metal Jacket (1987)
97. Notorious (1946)
98. Manhattan (1979)
99. Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid (1969)
100. Graduate, The (1967)

Saturday, January 24th, 2004

There are many things that I have achieved in life. Yet, I always feel like I am a fraud. That I am not as adequate as everyone else.

I had my performance evaluation for my work today (my supervisor bought me dinner YEAH!)…and it reminded me of how I first became a RCC. I knew they hired me because I was female. It wasn\’t because I was very technical or a great teamworker. It was more because they wanted to fulfil their quota of genders.

And so starts my search for a job in case I don\’t get into grad school. I want to be an interaction designer…at ebay, google, paypal, yahoo…somewhere. But I am constantly afraid that I will be selling myself too well that they won\’t get everything they thought was behind the plastic hard-to-open packaging.

Saturday, January 24th, 2004

I learned from the HBO show Curb Your Enthusiasm (produced and stars Larry David, creator of Seinfeld) that No Presents on a party invitation is a polite way of saying Bring a gift.

And I said so (with a bemused smile) when my dad showed me his coworker\’s 50th birthday party invitation. My parents rarely attend parties in the first place. As a result, my mom fretted around the house for 30 minutes looking for a present (a box of cookies!) while my dad insisted that the no-present rule be taken literally. In fact, my dad said that his coworker was probably being smart, having had bad experience in the past. BUT! Truth to be told, when I sent out my 21st birthday invite…I wrote no presents and the majority of the people who showed up bought something for me.

Are presents worth more than the presence?

Perhaps. Because my dad related to me today how a friend travelled all the way from Hong Kong…and gave us only a bag of peanuts from the plane. Surely if that memory stuck out, arriving without a present must at least be shocking.

Eventually, my parents left the house without a present.